December 22, 2009

Top 10 ethics scandals of 2009

As the year wraps up, the Citizens for Ethics and Responsibility in Washington (CREW) has released their list of top ethics scandals of 2009.

Singled out is TARP receiving/bonus getting executives; the SEC's total inability to stop Bernie Madoff's $65 billion ponzi scheme; a feckless FEC; John Ensign, John Murtha, Mark Sanford and Charlie Rangel all providing a less than upstanding example of ethical behavior; a Congress that won't police their own; and finally an undrained swamp that still stinks up all of D.C.

More than a few of President Obama's nominees had tax troubles, including Tom Daschle, Timothy Geithner and Nancy Killefer. While Daschle and Killefer both ultimately withdrew their nominations, Geithner went on to become the nation's Treasury Secretary. You know, the department in charge of collecting taxes.

On the transparency front in 2009, I was most disheartened with the White House's breaking its promise to wait five days before signing bills. If Obama has any political sense, I would highly recommend he wait the five days before signing the health care bill if/when it passes. There will be a lot of unhappy people in the wake of that bill, and it wouldn't make sense to upset transparency-minded individuals as well.

Make sure to read CREW's whole report.